Brain tumors – of which there are over 120 types – are abnormal growths of cells in the brain that can be either benign or malignant. They are a serious condition that can be life-threatening and require prompt medical attention. Approximately 700,000 people in the United States are currently living with a brain tumor, and roughly 18,200 of them will succumb to it in 2022, according to the National Brain Tumor Society.
Symptoms of brain tumors can vary depending on the size and location of the tumor, but there are some common signs that should not be ignored. However, these signs can also be caused by other medical conditions. It is important to consult with a doctor if any of the following symptoms persist. Fortunately, you can learn everything you need to know about brain tumors with a search online right now, which could help you spot early signs.
Headaches are a common symptom of many medical conditions, but if they persist despite over-the-counter medications, it is important to consult with a doctor. Headaches associated with brain tumors can be dull or severe and may occur in the morning or at night. The pain may also be worsened by coughing or straining.
A brain tumor affecting the optic nerves can cause blurred or double vision or a loss of peripheral vision. If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to seek medical attention. Other symptoms related to vision changes may include auras or flashing lights.
Seizures can be a sign of a brain tumor, especially if they occur in an adult who has never had a seizure before. Seizures may cause convulsions, jerking movements, or a loss of consciousness. If you experience a seizure, seek medical attention immediately.
Nausea and Vomiting
Increased pressure in the brain caused by a tumor can lead to nausea and vomiting. Other symptoms related to increased intracranial pressure may include dizziness, confusion, or lethargy.
A brain tumor can cause changes in memory, concentration, or problem-solving abilities. Other symptoms related to cognitive changes may include difficulty with reading, writing, or speaking.
A brain tumor can cause changes in mood and behavior, such as increased irritability, depression, or anxiety. Other symptoms related to personality changes may include apathy, social withdrawal, or changes in sleep patterns. Since the frontal lobe of the brain is in charge of personality, a tumor in this area is likely to have a more severe impact.
Weakness or Numbness
A tumor affecting the motor cortex can cause weakness or numbness in one side of the body. Since the brain is responsible for controlling the movements and sensations in our body, the presence of a tumor in an area of the brain that controls these functions can disrupt the signals being sent to the affected side. The weakness or numbness may start in the limbs and gradually progress to the face or other parts of the body.
Speech problems are one of the most common signs that a brain tumor is affecting the language center of the brain. A tumor can affect the brain’s ability to control the muscles responsible for speech and language, leading to slurred speech, difficulty in finding words, or even complete loss of speech. Difficulty speaking or understanding language are also both signs.
When To Seek Medical Attention
It is important to speak to a doctor if you are experiencing any of these symptoms. The doctor may perform a physical exam and order imaging tests, such as an MRI or CT scan, to diagnose a brain tumor. The earlier a brain tumor is diagnosed, the better the chances of successful treatment.
Treatment options for brain tumors depend on the size and location of the tumor, as well as the person’s overall health. Treatment may include surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, or a combination of these.